Friday, September 13, 2013

STEM Crisis Myth

Three points of interest in this post.

A very good write-up on IEEE Spectrum, I hope they don’t mind that I’m using their image to encourage you to read their article.

The STEM Crisis Is a Myth

By Robert N. Charette
Posted 30 Aug 2013 | 19:28 GMT


“A Matter of Supply vs. Demand: Every year U.S. schools grant more STEM degrees than there are available jobs. When you factor in H-1B visa holders, existing STEM degree holders, and the like, it’s hard to make a case that there’s a STEM labor shortage.”



National Association of Colleges and Employers:

Salary Survey: Average Starting Salary for Class of 2013 Grads Increases 2.4 Percent
Spotlight for Career Services Professionals
Spotlight for Recruiting Professionals
September 4, 2013

Salary Survey: Average Starting Salary for Class of 2013 Grads Increases 2.4 Percent
Figure 1: Average Salaries by Discipline
Broad Category 2013 Average Salary 2012 Average Salary Percent Change
Business $55,635 $51,541 7.9%
Communications $43,835 $42,286 3.7%
Computer Science $58,547 $60,038 -2.5%
Education $40,337 $39,080 3.2%
Engineering $62,062 $60,639 2.3%
Humanities & Social Sciences $37,791 $36,824 2.6%
Math & Sciences $42,731 $42,355 0.9%
Overall $45,327 $44,259 2.4%

So much for Science, Tech, Engineering and Math (STEM) worker shortage:
* Computer Science wages decline by (2.5%)
* Math and Science under-perform with a 0.9% increase
* Engineering 2.3%, increases less than Humanities and Social Sciences 2.6%, and Education 3.2%
* Tech is not listed in the Starting Salary tables, probably because Tech is primarily Associate degree level work and should not be open to employment based immigration.

In fact, the overall statistic appears to be skewed by Business salary increases 7.9%
Hat-tip to Mark for finding this gem.

Comparing Unemployment Levels College-degreed, Native-born and Foreign-born

Finally, we have a graph from FRED with indexed unemployment levels.  For college graduates (bachelors degree and above), we see declining unemployment levels until 2000 when the H-1B and L-1 visa became a path to citizenship under The American Competitiveness in the Twenty-First Century Act (AC21).  The H-1B cap was increased from 65,000 to 195,000 and some classifications of workers also became exempt from the cap.


Native and Foreign born data started being published in 2007

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